Kentucky Derby and Oaks Roundup: March 14, 2022

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March 14th, 2022

Spring is fast approaching, and so is the Kentucky Derby (G1). On March 18, we’ll reach a milestone marker: 50 days remaining until the first Saturday in May.

Let’s catch up on the latest Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks (G1) news:

Changes on the leaderboard

A new name has risen to the top of the Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard.

Classic Causeway proved much the best in Saturday’s Tampa Bay Derby (G2) at Tampa Bay Downs, carving out the pace before kicking on to win by 2 1/2 lengths. The improving son of Giant’s Causeway has cracked the trifecta in four straight Road to the Kentucky Derby qualifiers, and the 66 points he’s accumulated places him narrowly ahead of Epicenter (64 points) atop the leaderboard.

Tampa Bay Derby runner-up Grantham (21 points, eighth place) and Shipsational (14 points, 15th place) have also accumulated enough points to crack the Top 20. Golden Glider (5 points, 33rd place) completed the Tampa Bay Derby superfecta.

In addition, Fountain of Youth S. (G2) third-place finisher O Captain has been confirmed as a late Triple Crown nominee. He now ranks 27th on the leaderboard with 10 points.

RELATED: Tales from the Crib for Classic Causeway

Kentucky Derby, Oaks Future Wager pools close

Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 4 closed on Sunday with Smile Happy the individual favorite at 6-1. Last year’s Kentucky Jockey Club S. (G2) winner has remarkably ranked as the individual betting choice in each of the first four pools.

Meanwhile, undefeated champion two-year-old filly Echo Zulu closed as the 5-2 overall favorite in the lone Kentucky Oaks Future Wager. For more information, check out our recap of the future wagers betting action.

On the work tab

Call Me Midnight: Breezed six furlongs in 1:14.00 on Saturday at Fair Grounds.

Epicenter: Burned up the Fair Grounds main track on Monday morning, clocking five furlongs in a bullet :59.80.

Gilded Age: Breezed five furlongs in 1:02.40 on Friday at Payson Park.

Pappacap: Turned in a swift five-furlong workout on Saturday at the Casse Training Center, completing the move in :59.20.

Slow Down Andy: Stepped up to seven furlongs for his latest move at Santa Anita, clocking the distance in 1:27.40 on Sunday.

Smile Happy: Clocked half a mile in :49.42 on Saturday at Gulfstream Park.

Volcanic: Traveled five furlongs in 1:02.00 on Saturday at the Casse Training Center.

White Abarrio: Fired off a bullet five-furlong workout on Sunday at Gulfstream Park, getting the distance in :59.49.

Zandon: Took a spin at Payson Park on Saturday, breezing four furlongs in a swift :48.40.

Road to the Kentucky Oaks

It was a quiet week on the Road to the Kentucky Oaks. No prep races were conducted, so the leaderboard remains unchanged.

However, there was a bit of news involving leaderboard #1 Secret Oath (60 points). The runaway Honeybee S. (G3) winner will take on males in the April 2 Arkansas Derby (G1) on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, rather than face fillies in Oaklawn’s Fantasy S. (G3) on the same afternoon.

The Kentucky Oaks remains the long-term goal for Secret Oath, but participating in the Arkansas Derby opens the door—if only slightly—for a start in the Kentucky Derby. The last filly to participate in the Run for the Roses was Devil May Care, who finished 10th in 2010.

Looking ahead

The Kentucky Derby and Oaks trails are taking a two-week hiatus until March 26, when a bevy of important qualifiers will take place six weeks out from the first Saturday in May. We’ll dive into the schedule and prospective contenders next week.